The end of the year and the start of the festive season is always bittersweet for me.
It’s a beautiful time of year with family, and friends who have become family, but it’s also one of the times when the distance between me and my Australian family, and friends who have been my family since my hedonistic youth, is palpable.
It can be a difficult thing to straddle two worlds.
But it can be made easier with food! And Liza from The New Food in Town, who has been sharing her delicious creations with us all year, is also a wonderful friend of mine. And she is also far from home. She gets it. And a few days ago she turned up on my doorstep with a dessert that reminds me of my home. Pavlova! It may or may not have already been devoured. That is my Christmas secret!
Not sure what it is? Here’s how Liza describes it:
Ending 2018 with Pavlova, a light, a merengue-based cake with a crisp crust and a fluffy, light, ‘mallowy’ inside. Topped with whipped cream, mixed with lemon curd and berry compote, topped with berries, toasted slivered almonds, fresh mint leaves.
Named after Anna Pavlova, a 19th century ballerina, the recipe was said to be discovered in a cookbook in Australia and in New Zealand where it was popular. And now enjoyed all over the world, especially during Christmas holidays.
A once-in-a-while indulgence, Pavlova is a popular Christmas dessert, like an exclamation point to a sentence, a happy ending to 12 months of seasons, live events, milestones! Sugary sweet, intensely rich, met with a bit of tarty lemon curd and berries, and a touch of mint. Much like the life we’d like to live of occasional luxuries and a contrast of flavours.
Wishing everyone a fabulous festive season, with good friends, good food, and good memories.